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Quebec Minister of Economy Pierre Fitzgibbon announces a $41.3 million to support innovation in the aerospace industry as Bombardier president Alain Bellemare looks on in Montreal on Feb. 22, 2019.Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press

The CEO and union leaders at Bombardier Inc. say the plane-and-train maker is well on the way to finding new work for recently laid-off employees.

Bombardier says filling different positions within the Montreal-based company, finding jobs with other employers or reverting to part-time work are part of what’s called the “reclassification” process.

Last November, the plane-and-train-maker announced about 5,000 layoffs – 2,500 of them in Quebec and 500 in Ontario – as part of a restructuring plan that the company says will save it US$250 million a year.

Chief executive officer Alain Bellemare says that so far, about 20 per cent of laid-off employees in Quebec, or roughly 500 workers, have been reclassified, often finding other roles at the 77-year-old company or elsewhere in the province’s aerospace sector.

David Chartrand, Quebec co-ordinator for the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, says that no workers he represents have lost their jobs to date.

Mr. Bellemare has said the reclassification process will take 18 months in total.

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